Shawarma Showdown: Top Picks In Metro Detroit

March 14, 2024
Big shawarma with vegetables and meat on a dark background with fries. Close up, selective focus

In Metro Detroit, one culinary sensation that’s been capturing the hearts and appetites of locals and visitors alike is shawarma. This Middle Eastern delight, known for its savory slices of marinated meat roasted on a spit and served in a wrap or sandwich, offers a tapestry of flavors that speak of tradition and the vibrant communities that call Metro Detroit home. We’ve embarked on a flavorful journey through Metro Detroit to bring you the inside scoop on where to find the best shawarma in town, featuring some standout establishments.

BEIRUT BAKERY

25706 Schoolcraft Road, Redford Charter Township

At Beirut Bakery, tradition isn’t just in the recipes; it’s in the heart of every dish served. As the first Middle Eastern shop in Wayne County after opening in 1979, Beirut Bakery is passionate about its food and its family’s legacy. Combining garlic and tahini sauces, the shawarmas all feature pickled turnips, spiced onions, and cucumber pickles. Whether you opt for the chicken, beef, or veggie shawarma, each bite wrapped in a freshly baked pita is everything you’ve been missing and more. 

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ALIE’S LEBANESE GRILL

33355 Van Dyke Avenue, Sterling Heights

Alie’s Lebanese Grill introduces a novel concept to the shawarma scene with Michigan’s first self-serve shawarma station. Manager Frank Jajou shares, “We bring a whole shawarma machine to your table, demonstrate how to use it, and let you become your own chef and cut your own meat.” Beyond this food experience, shawarma sandwiches are available on the menu, with your choice of chicken rolled with pickles, lettuce, and garlic sauce, or meat rolled with onions, tomatoes, pickles, parsley, and tahini sauce. There is also a chicken hummus and tabouli sandwich that uses marinated chicken shawarma meat. 

MALEK AL-KABOB

22371 Goddard Road, Taylor

3323 West Road, Trenton

22065 Michigan Avenue, Dearborn

This restaurant prides itself on decades of kitchen experience with “plenty of time to perfect our recipes,” creating a reputation for excellent food. One of Malek Al-Kabob’s specials is the loaded shawarma, elevating an already delicious dish. They take a plateful of slowly roasted chicken or beef shavings from the broiler to top with fries and then drizzle with house Sajji sauce and Caesar dressing. If you want something lighter, add chicken or beef shawarma to one of the fresh salads, like the Fattoush or Rice Almond salad choices. 

BUCHAREST GRILL

Multiple locations in Metro Detroit

Bucharest Grill takes a unique approach, blending traditional Middle Eastern dishes with influences from Romanian cuisine and American touches. It’s a favorite throughout Metro Detroit for those looking to explore how different culinary traditions can come together to create something truly special. For your shawarma fix, choose from options like vegetarian, beef, lamb, chicken, falafel, or the Bucharest shawarma, which features marinated grilled chicken, cabbage, tomatoes, fries, pickles, mayo, and garlic sauce all perfectly wrapped in a pita. Bucharest also offers shawarma sticks, which come with tomato, pickles, and garlic spread, and your choice of chicken, beef, or lamb for a handheld delight. 

LA PITA

22681 Newman Street, Dearborn

La Pita offers delicious shawarma in a fine dining setting. Here, you can get your traditional chicken or beef pita-wrapped sandwiches, but you can also get special lunches or entrees too. Some house specialties include the shawarma platter, which comes with your choice of marinated, seasoned, and roasted meats, along with soup or salad, and two other sides. Lunch specials are served all day, and the shawarma options are roasted on rotating skewers and served with rice, hummus, a house salad, and garlic or tahini sauce. La Pita does a great job of combining traditional Lebanese recipes with modern Mediterranean additions. 

This article has been updated to include new information. The original article was published on April 24, 2019, and was authored by Karen Dybis.

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